Writing Avec Baby

by kipress

How does anyone get anything done when they have children? While preparing to join the not-very-elite club of people who have reproduced, I was told repeatedly that my standards would have to slide. If those people were referring to housework, then they were certainly right, and I’ve got to say that I wasn’t sure that my standards could go much lower than they already were.

They have.

But strangely, I seem to have found more time to write since having a baby. Maybe if I stopped writing, I would be able to clean the toilet more often.


Now, I’m hardly working on my novel-in-a-drawer, or even writing anything as impressive as essays or short stories. I’ve defaulted to poems, my first language apparently, though my sights were set not too long ago on more sustained forms. Sustained time is not something I can find. But snippets of time, yes.

I’ve always noticed that parents become more efficient people, can switch on and off, back and forth between this task and that. I’ve been switching the magic on quickly, in the middle of the night perhaps, to just get it out as fast as I can in case the girl wakes up and rips the keys off my keyboard.

Which is all fine and good and after a year or so of this, I have a whole lot of poems.

First drafts of poems.

Hammering stuff out is one thing, but I haven’t figured out yet how to switch on the frame of mind needed to revise. I don’t know the last time I’ve actually used my printer. I think it must have been before she was born.

But who needs paper anyway anymore, right? If I never finish another book, I’ll save some trees. Or, rather, the sapling needed for the print run a poetry book gets.

Never mind. I forgot that by the time I finish my next book, paper books won’t exist any more. Right?

Tree pulped to print my last book.

Tree pulped to print my last book.